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CMS Updates Medicare Home Health Providers in January Open Door Forum

CMS Updates Medicare Home Health Providers in January Open Door Forum


Courtesy of the National Association for Home Care & Hospice

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) held its Home Health, Hospice & Durable Medical Equipment Open Door Forum (ODF) on January 11, 2023.  The summary of the ODF discussion applicable to home health providers is below.

Home Health Payment Policy

CMS announced that the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023, Section 4137 extends the rural add-on policy to increase by 1% of the payment amount made for home health services provided in the ‘‘low population density’’ category for Calendar Year (CY) 2023. Change Request 12957 – Home Health Prospective Payment System (HH PPS) Rate Update for Calendar Year (CY) 2023 has been revised to reflect the change.

Expanded Home Health Value-Based Purchasing Model (HHVBP)

CMS officials reminded participants of the Expanded HHVBP Model, which began on January 1, 2023. This year is the first performance year and 2025 will be the first payment year.

The Expanded HHVBP model webpage houses over 30 resources designed to help providers prepare to implement the expanded Model. Resources such as webinar recordings, FAQs, a Model guide, and monthly newsletters can be instrumental in helping providers gain an understanding of the expanded Model. In addition, CMS recently made available Pre-Implementation Performance Reports (PIPRs) to all home health agencies. PIPRs show providers how their performance compares to other providers in the assigned volume-based cohort, including statistics describing the distribution of performance scores. The next PIPRs will be available around January 26, 2023. Participants interested in receiving additional information, or updates, or have questions about the Expanded HHVBP Model should utilize the following resources.

Home Health Quality Reporting Program (HH QRP)

The latest Care Compare refresh for the HH QRP occurred on January 1, 2023. Preview reports were posted on the Internet Quality Improvement and Evaluation System (iQIES) on October 6, 2022.

The January 2023 Quality Assessment Only (QAO) Interim Performance Reports are available in the iQIES. These reports reflect Outcome and Assessment Information Set (OASIS) data from October 2021 through September 2022. The next QAO interim report will be available in the iQIES in April 2023 and reflect OASIS data from January 2022 through December 2022. The final OASIS-E instrument and User’s Manual are now available on the CMS website.

Home Health Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HHCAHPS)

CMS announced registration is now open for the HHCAHPS survey vendor update webinar training session. The HHCAHPS training will take place on Tuesday, January 31, 2023, at 12:00 PM ET.

Survey vendors who wish to retain their status as approved HHCAHPS survey vendors must have their designated HHCAHPS survey project manager attend the entire session.

Registration is also open for the 2023 Introduction to the HHCAHPS Survey self-paced training. Training materials will be available beginning on January 23, 2023. More information about the survey and the requirements for becoming an approved HHCAHPS survey vendor can be accessed on the HHCAHPS survey website and vendors may also contact the Coordination Team at or call toll-free (866) 354-0985.

Participants were reminded that the next HHCAHPS data submission deadline is January 19, 2023. Home health agencies are responsible for ensuring their survey vendor has submitted all the required survey data.

CMS reminded participants that home health agencies are eligible for an exemption from participating in the HHCAHPS survey for the CY 2024 Annual Performance Update (APU) if they served 59 or fewer survey-eligible patients between April 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022. CMS noted that the exemption applies only to the patient census during the year that qualified the agency for the exemption. If the agency’s census fluctuates during the reporting year, HHCAHPS participation is still required. CMS recommended that providers contact the HHCAHPS contractor at or call (866) 354-0985 for any questions regarding participation requirements.

Health Equity Technical Expert Panel (TEP)

CMS announced a Health Equity TEP convened during November and December 2022 to address the development of a health equity measure for the home health and hospice quality reporting programs. A report will be issued later with the discussion and recommendations.

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